I’ve never been in counseling before, what is it like?
Counseling can be described as a way for a person to come to someone of a neutral stance who can provide support, feedback, and specific techniques and skills to address a varying degree of life challenges that a person may be facing. Part of the counselor’s role is get to know the person coming to them, to find out what they want to work on specifically, and to create a safe, therapeutic space that the client can share what’s in their heart and on their mind. Counseling can include art, music, relaxation, silence, and role playing. Oftentimes it is a place for a client to work alongside a clinician who can support and encourage the client, and in the end the client is coming up with the plan of action for the best way to move forward. Counseling can include family members, significant others, friends, a parent and a child and it can also include homework or journaling of sorts. Some people wish to go to counseling for longer periods of time (1 to 2 years) while others prefer short term (3 to 6 months) and then can come back at later times for additional support for a period of time. Always the hope is that the client will leave counseling feeling heard, with new insights, and hopefully additional coping skills.
How will this be different from past counseling experiences?
In my opinion every counseling experience differs because of the unique individuals that participate. Styles and personalities and skills differ across the board and I think that it is very important that an individual who is seeking counseling find a good fit. My hope is that you find me respectful, supportive, optimistic, assertive, and that I provide you with a safe, caring therapeutic environment. I take no offense knowing I am not the right counselor for everyone, and I am willing to offer a list of individuals for someone to review if we found you would be best served by someone else.
What if my partner is unwilling to come to counseling?
While you may be highly motivated to come to counseling, perhaps your partner is not and counseling serves those best who are willing volunteers in the process. Individual counseling can still be an option, or maybe you two would like to try one session first to see what you think. Perhaps you would continue with me individually and I would refer you to another qualified counselor for couples counseling when your partner felt ready to start couples counseling together.
Is relationship counseling only for married couples?
Definitely not! Counseling can benefit friends, people who live together, and as a whole family or in family dyads. Relationships can be complicated and sometimes having the counselor and mediator in between can help open up respectful communication after ground rules are set and goals are shared and agreed on.
Will anyone know I am attending therapy?
The simple answer is no. Unless you sign a release of information by law I cannot disclose you are receiving services from me unless I feel your life or someone’s life that you are a part of is in danger. This will be further discussed in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPPA) compliance forms before our first session.
Do you accept insurance?
Not at this time.
Do you have low-fee options?
After consultation with me, in some cases I can make accommodations for those who are living near the poverty line or have dire financial hardships.
Do you offer online counseling? How does it work?
I offer Skype counseling services using video conferencing. This requires an internet connection and webcam in a private space. They are 50 minute sessions and I offer all services online as I do in person. If you are not sure if this will work for you, we can try one session and see what you think before you sign on for further sessions.
What forms of payment do you accept?
Checks, cash, money orders, or for online clients Paypal.
How do you work with people from diverse backgrounds?
Being from a multicultural family myself I am sensitive to those who have a diverse background. Part of working with others is finding out about their families, their cultural and spiritual beliefs, and getting to know how each person is comfortable acknowledging their diverse background and practices. I have worked with many folks of different ethnic, religious, and sexual backgrounds. Additionally I have worked with those with physical and mental disabilities. Please feel free to contact me if you have specific questions about this, or want more information about my specific background knowledge.
Will you participate in legal/custody disputes?
I would be willing to consider doing this on a case by case basis, as well as with a clear understanding of the fee agreement for these special circumstances.
Do you have weekend and evening hours?
Yes! Due to the fact that I work another job, many of my hours of availability will fall in the evenings and weekends. Appointments will generally be scheduled between 8am and 8pm PST, however other arrangements can be made on a case by case basis.
What is your cancellation policy?
I need 24 hour notice to reschedule for you to avoid a cancellation fee. There is a fee for a missed session.
How do I get my child into treatment?
Call me, all legal guardians must consent to treatment and sign necessary paperwork as well as make payment, and then treatment can begin.
What is your emergency policy?
White Bird’s Crisis line is available 24/7, as well as the National Suicide Prevention Line which you can find on my resource page. I may be able to take calls after hours but generally only 8am to 8pm, although I cannot guarantee quick call backs because I do work at a local hospital and will be unavailable during those work hours.
How do I contact you?
Fill out a contact form or email me at joregonrose(at)yahoo(dot)com.
How long does a session take?
50 minutes, although our first session may last 90 minutes due to paperwork and follow up questions you may have before we start the first session.
Can you prescribe medications?
Do you offer faith-based counseling?
While I have no qualms addressing spiritual or faith journeys, questions, or issues I would say there are other professionals who are more qualified to do faith-based counseling. I would have no problem meeting or consulting with your spiritual confidant and could utilize this knowledge as a foundation block in our counseling sessions if that is your preference.
What should I do if I am not satisfied with my counseling?
At ANY point you are not satisfied with counseling with me I would ask that you let me know, so we might discuss if there is a way for me to meet your needs. If not, I would ask that you come to one last termination session for closure and I would provide you with a list of other counseling referrals.